Job Opportunity In (Anonymous City) Public School System
I walk into the room on the first day of school, with confidence. I feel a wave of assuredness as the seats have been placed neatly in their arcs. I am wearing my favorite blazer. My hair is combed back. I have prepared the room perfectly. An objective is written out on the board in my neat handwriting, and a “Welcome Back” message is projected on the board.
I ooze confidence. I’ve done this before. I am teacher. The kids walk into class. It is their first day of band – they are excited to be here. I am excited to be here. I introduce myself. I am teacher. Make a joke. They laugh. They like me. I get serious. I talk about procedures, and class expectations. A student interrupts me. I raise an eyebrow, and gently remind student of the rules. “I love for you to talk – but only when you raise your hand first”
I continue instruction. I am teacher. I am respected. The students look at me with eyes that are shining. Their mouths are slightly agape. They are practically scratching at their instrument cases, bursting with eagerness to start the first day of band class. Do they know how to play? No. But I am confident that I can lead them to. I tell them this. “Soon – every one in this room will be a maestro”
Chairs are scattered around the room. I try and get the students attention. I clap my hands. They aren’t in first grade anymore… No response. I try yelling, but my voice feels shrill and camouflaged amongst the chatter. Trombone player in the back has his instrument out of the case, and the metal clangs on the floor. Trumpet player is throwing pencils and trying to make a ‘basket’ into the tuba bell. Saxophonists are pretending to strangle themselves with their neck straps. The flutists are sitting nicely, looking annoyed. At me.
Kid in the back of the room has friend in a headlock. No. He is using said friend to beat the bass drum. “No! Stop! What are you doing?!” How do I control this mess? I walk to the back of the room and give a stern direction to the kids, and they look at me, smile, and continue banging. Now I look to the front of the room, and there are the clarinet players, writing on the front board , “Ms. Mac can suck my dick”
I feel my nose begin to tingle and then run because of the pressure of my held back tears. How can I do this? How can I organize this chaos? Why don’t these kids like me? Why am I not good enough? Do they realize that I am a human? Do they realize that this hurts me?
Can I ever be good enough?
Todays adventure brought to you by:
A horrible fear of my first year of teaching
The exuberance that I feel because I know I have landed in the right profession and I couldn’t be more excited to get my feet wet